This one is a very personal story, and one that I have not shared with many other souls. The reason I have not really shared it, is because I am ashamed of how my brain deals with food. And the fact I am still dealing with his today.
This is my story of how I battled with Anorexia and Bulimia.
When I was younger, I was thin. Not abnormally thin, but defiantly on the lower spectrum for girls my age. I had pride in my body weight. I loved the fact I could go into any store and find something that fitted. However, I was prone to jealously, and compared myself to the girls on magazines. It was at the same time boys came onto the scene. So looking good was the most important thing in my life. To top this off I was an utter perfectionist, so getting my body ‘perfect’ was the goal.
Of course, I now know that there is no ‘perfect’ it doesn’t exist. But try telling that to an impressionable 14 year old. I compared myself to my gorgeous friends everyday. And everyday I wasn’t good enough. They were all amazingly beautiful, and who was I to be friends with them. I was fat, and ugly and this is how my thoughts went everyday. It was ultimately destructive and killed all my self esteem. So I pushed myself in other areas, I pushed myself to study harder, eat less, work out more. I got obsessed. And this is where it took a turn.
I discovered the pro-ana sites. And most days I would prowl these site for the inspiration I needed to stop eating. And gradually I forced myself to turn away from food. I would of course, hide it from everyone. I never ate breakfast-being one of 4 kids, no-one noticed. I took lunch, but it just got thrown in the bin. And then dinner time. I would sometimes eat dinner with the family, then go to the bathroom and throw it up. My other ploy was to take my dinner to my bedroom and say I has study to do, then throw it all out. I got very good at this little game.
Over time I got thinner and thinner, and more obsessed with food. I was counting calories, and exercising the ones that I ate off. I was very depressed and found myself thinking suicidal thoughts often. It was a sad existence. I hated my life, even though I was doing very well at school, it was never enough for my perfect ideal of my life. I would cut myself and hurt myself. Then there was the rebellion. Where I snuck out, went out partying, doing things a 15 year old should not be doing. I got myself in some pretty scary situations.
At one point O got down to about 45kgs, which although is not totally anorexic, but I was heading that way. On a sad path to self hate, and full blown anorexia.
One day however, I can’t remember why, but I reached out. To one of my oldest friends. And we talked. And somehow, she changed my mind. That conversation (although she might not know this) completely changed how I dealt with my issues. And to this day I am grateful that she took the time to talk and to listen. After that something changed. I started eating again. It took a long time, but I put the past out of my mind and started to enjoy life again.
Over the past 7 years I have gradually learnt to love my body. For all its quirks and curves. It it mine, and its my temple. The way girls grow up these days, its no wonder that they develop this awful self hate, and low self esteem. With our mothers dieting, and teaching us how to battle with our bodies. The magazines we read, the shows we watch, and the music we listen to plays a role in how we develop. For me I went to hell and back.
After it all happened I put on weight, and since then I have been battling to gt it off again. I have dieted and dieted and tried everything And even though I know and understand now, I still have those thoughts in the very dark places in my mind. Its a hard thing to battle. But through my obsession with food I have created a career and a passion. I have turned something very dark into my life and my love. And my goal is to help others to learn to change their hurtful relationship with food, into a real love for food, and for their bodies.
I was lucky. I got help. Not from a professional, but from someone I trusted, and someone who would listen. There are many girls out there who won’t get help. They, unfortunately will die. And its not just the anorexic girls, its the girls who are overweight. In our society we breed girls who battle and hate their bodies. Its time we change that. As role models for these girls, we can only show them to love their bodies, and nourish them with good food. To learn to love themselves, and to learn to love each other.